Chapter 08: Exodus

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They all converged on Alice at once, except for Turner, who drew back from her. Viktor and Marshall managed to get her up onto the examination table next to Paul, who was still unconscious. Once they had her laid out, Marshall looked around helplessly for a second. Alice was the only medic at the base.

His eyes fell on Turner. "Help her."

"No," he replied simply.

"Wh...what? What the fuck do you mean 'no'?!" he demanded.

Turner remained hard-faced, his arms across his chest. "She's been bitten, yeah? She's turning into one of those fucking things. We should just put her out of her misery right now, because she isn't going to wake up as a regular person. The next time she opens her eyes, she's going to be one of those things. So we should pay her a mercy and put a bullet in her head, her and the other guy. You said he was bitten, too."

"John..." Laura said, "maybe-"

"No!" Marshall snapped. "I'm not shooting two of our people in the fucking head just because this nutjob thinks they're going to turn!"

Turner took a step towards him. His voice was low but angry. "I'm not a nutjob, I've seen this shit. It's what happened to my base. Already one of you is dead and these other two will be dead, objectively, soon. And then they'll become threats."

"Do you know that there's no cure? No chance of fighting off the infection?" Marshall asked.

Turner seemed to balk at the question, but only for a second. "Every single person I've seen with a bite has gone unconscious, died, and then returned. That's proof enough for me."

Marshall shook his head. "No, that's not good enough for me. Viktor, stay here, get some medical kits together, watch them." He looked at Turner. "All of them. We're leaving, going to head for the medical station. If there's anything you want from your dormitory, now would be the time. Viktor? Need anything?" he asked.

Viktor shook his head. "Nyet. I'll be fine with what I've got." He was already heading to the medical cabinet to put together the kits.

"Laura, Andrea, let's go then," Marshall said.

"I just remembered that Nate had my pistol, I need to go get it," Laura said.

"Hurry up, and be careful," Marshall replied.

She nodded, turned and left. Marshall set off after her with Andrea in tow. As they made their way back to the dormitories, Andrea asked, "What about Paul and Alice? What will we do with them?"

"Carry them. There might be people alive over at the medical facility," Marshall said, not believing the words as they left his mouth. "Maybe they can help."

"Okay," Andrea replied, sounding small and scared in the gloom.

They came to the dormitories wing. Andrea hesitated for a moment, then went off to her room. Marshall went to his. He hurried, going directly to his nightstand and pulling open the drawer. He fished out his pack of cigarettes and his lighter, pocketing both of them. For a moment, he stared at the contents of the drawer.

There wasn't much there, just an infopad, a spare lighter, a random assortment of personal crap that he'd brought with him. None of it really mattered, he supposed he'd just held onto it out of habit more than anything else.

Now, he left it behind, satisfied that he had what he needed. He went back out into the corridor and met back up with Andrea.

"I had a thought," she said. "We're bringing guns, bullets, medical equipment, but what about food? We honestly don't know what's ahead, and it might be a good idea to bring some food and water along with us."

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